Postgame Quotes - Stanford at No 23 Arizona State

Nov. 6, 2004

Recap

Arizona State Head Coach Dirk Koetter
On the game:
'I've never been in a game quite like this. Our defense was playing great and our offense was marching the ball on the ground but we couldn't score. We had two punts blocked. So many guys stepped up and made plays when they had to. We answered the scratch as a team tonight. But we also shot ourselves in the foot about a thousand times and we made it a lot tougher than we needed to. They can say anything they want about us, but at the end of the day we're 7-2.'

On ASU's defense...
'Our front four is really playing well and the linebackers are playing hard. We got tested on our depth a little bit but our defense had a great game plan. This game didn't have to be this close. We had two blocked punts and there is a stat out there that something like 85% in which you get a punt blocked you lose. To overcome two blocked punts, I'm sure that number is just unbelievable. It takes heart to come back when you're down and come back in the fourth quarter.'

On the `Hail Mary' and the end of the first half...
'We were trying to just complete a pass to get into field goal range and kick a field goal. After we got sacked we called a timeout and I told the guys that Andrew (Walter) can easily throw this into the end zone and we have to do a great job of protecting and create a jump ball at the goal line. Right when the ball left his hand it looked like it had a chance.'

On Rudy Burgess...
'Think about what Rudy (Burgess) did tonight. He weighs 172 pounds soaking wet. He carried the rock and took some hits. He's also on the kickoff team on top of all that. Rudy was a real warrior tonight. That guy is all heart and I'll take him on my team any day.'

On the Stanford defense...
'We were trying to get our own team to play without thinking and over-analyze stuff. That first drive was effortless, we went right down the field. But one play on every drive was killing us. There were a lot of ups and downs on offense tonight. We were our own worst enemies. We had things open but didn't hit them. They gave us some different blitzes that we haven't seen. You have to give Stanford credit. They hung in there and played an odd defense. I would equate that to a defense playing a wishbone offense that you only see once a year. It's different and it gives you some problems and they got us with a couple of their blitzes.'

ASU QB Andrew Walter
On breaking John Elway's conference touchdown record...
'I always down play the record. It is not because of me, I have to thank God, the guy sitting next to me [Drew Hodgon], a lot of guys that have been in the frame work, guys that have graduated, and there have been a lot of people that have enabled this, and coach [Dirk Koetter] calling great plays. As much as people are going to talk about me, there are so many things much more than me.'

On the two-minute drill...
'Well, we have done it on the road so many times, we finally have had a chance to do it at home in the past coupe of games. I think it is very fitting, they [The Fans] deserve it. We have been there before, we have practiced it, to have our backs against the wall is the way we like it.'

On the receiving core...
'We had a lot of guys step up on that last drive. T Rich [Terry Richardson] stretching for a first down. Moey [Moey Mutz] stretching for a first down, plus making a great catch. We had so many guys make plays during the last drive, which enabled us to drive down the field and score, which led to the win.'

On his feeling during the last drive...
'That is the position we like to be in. To get a win and do it at home is great. The feeling in the huddle was, 'Lets get the job done.' It was fun.'

On the `Hail Mary' play to end the first half...
'There was some divine intervention involved in that one. Just throw the ball up there and hopefully comes down in our favor'

On the play of Matt Miller...
'He was huge. He made some great plays. When we needed him to step up he did. He deserve a lot of credit.'

ASU TB Rudy Burgess
On his number of carries tonight...
'I was expecting to carry the ball a lot because Hakim [Hakim Hill] was hurt.'

On the feeling in the last drive of the game...
'We have been in that situation before, we have that mental toughness, and we know how to fight adversity. We did this against UCLA so we have been there before, we just did not panic.'

On his feeling towards the end of the game ...
'I was worn out, taking all of those big blows, I just had to stay mentally tough.'

ASU TE/HB Matt Miller
On two touchdown catches...
'Heading into this week, our team focused on mental toughness. We never want to give up in a game and we accomplished that tonight. I have never had two bigger catches in my life. Zach (Miller) got double-teamed and I came across the middle and was able to make the catch to win the game. The whole team never gave up tonight and we all believed that it was going to happen.'

On teams attitude giving up the late touchdown...
'We all got off the bench together as a team and knew we would make the drive to score. All that matters is that we came out with the win. You can write what you want, but we came out of here with a victory.'

On QB Andrew Walter...
'Andrew made history tonight and I am just happy I was able to be there with him when he did. I am thankful that our team has Andrew this year. I'm glad that he stuck around for his senior year. He really kept our heads in the game tonight, told us what to do and we did it.'

On his attitude trailing late...
'I just get that fire in my belly. I want to get in and make that catch to win the game. I have always felt that way. I'm glad I got the opportunity to get in the game and finally do it. We work on that play every Friday, where Zach (Miller) cuts across the middle, Andrew (Walter) throws it up and I catch it.'

ASU S Riccardo Stewart
On offense on the final drive...
'I was hoping that we would score. I just kept thinking, 'How are we going to score and when are going to score'. I thought that we could score on them. We know that we have big play ability on offense and they showed that when they drove down the field with little time remaining on the clock.'

On being in the position of the offense on the final drive...
'I would choose to be on defense, of course. I would be a coward if I said I would rather watch someone else do it. But it was fun to be able to watch the offense on that drive.'

On effectiveness of SU QB T.C. Ostrander...
'I thought that he did a great job of coming in and leading their offense. But I think that what they got, we gave them on defense. I don't think it really mattered with their quarterback (Trent Edwadrds) going down. But, their quarterback (Ostrander) did a great job for them. I wasn't surprised at all with what he did for them.'

On the resiliency of the team...
'Our motto right now is `answer the scratch'. Answer the scratch doesn't mean that just because the National Championship or the Rose Bowl is out of our hands that we are going to quit. As seniors we wanted to start a legacy. We wanted to change the face of ASU football over the past couple of years. We want to win games in November. We want to be bowl eligible at the end of the year. Bouncing back after a loss is something that we have to do. We can back after losing to USC and beat UCLA. We came back tonight after losing to Cal and won against Stanford. It might not have been the prettiest win, but we have 7 wins, and that is pretty good.'

ASU LB Justin Burks
On the importance of the last drive...
'We knew we could do it, the team motto all year long was `answer the scratch.' It was important to us, we weren't trying to impress anyone, and we just answered the scratch.'

On the mistakes in the game and how they almost cost ASU the game...
'Like I said, we answered the scratch. We had too many turnovers and it almost cost us the game, but we stayed playing within ourselves and won the game.'

On the two losses to good teams...
'Most of the country has over looked us, we lost to two top-five teams and deserve credit for being a good football team. We are starting to prove to the rest of the Pac-10 and the country that we are for real.'

ASU C Drew Hodgdon
On the defense lacking on Stanford's last drive...
'We've always been able to overcome on one side of the ball or the other. The defense let that long ball go on the last possession and we, on offense, stepped up and got the win, like they have done for us so often.'

On the mind set on the last drive...
'This was a position we have been in many times before, two years ago, the Holiday Bowl year, even last year at North Carolina and this year against UCLA. No one was fearful in the huddle, we knew we could do it, it was frustrating knowing that we put ourselves in this position but no one panicked.'


Stanford Head Coach Buddy Teevens
On chances to win...
'I thought our guys competed hard for the duration of the ballgame. We had an opportunity to win and it unfortunately slipped away. I give a lot of credit to Andrew Walter for his textbook operation out there. He went down, protected the football, was harassed when we put pressure on him, but he made some key throws and delivered in the end.'

On the emotions of the team right now...
'Obviously, they are down. They played their hearts out and we talked about courage and competing earlier this morning. We talked about adversity and all the various catchphrases out there. Today, you saw all of them. They competed throughout the course of the ballgame. They laid it all out there, but we'll recover. We have a tough game at home against Oregon State next week. I am very, very proud of our effort tonight. '

On QB T.C. Ostrander...
'He came in again to fill in and I thought he was sharper in his second outing. He was sharper and made some timely throws. He showed good courage in the pocket. It got a little bit noisy out there, but he made some good throws and he scrambled as well, picked up a first down at one point. I was very pleased and impressed with his effort. T.C. progressed tonight. He got rid of the football and didn't take big sacks. He played wisely and he is a tough kid. He made some key throws in critical situations.'

On the performance of your defense...
'Bend, but don't break. It's a tough offense that puts points and numbers up against everybody. We got them off the field on a number of occasions and kept the score down. It was a competitive situation where the offense needed to score, but they played their hearts out. And they'll do it again next week and the week after.'

Stanford OLB Jon Alston
'I'm hurt, hurting pretty bad. I'm not going to take this loss and internalize it negatively, because I don't want to express t hat to my teammates. I don't want them expressing that to me. I'm going to focus on the positive things we came out showed up with a lot of guys that hadn't showed up for us who showed up tonight. As a team we fought and played with great courage and we played with our hearts. That's what I'm going to take with me to work tomorrow and that's what I'm going to take next week. That's what we as a team are going to do.

'It was a 19-yard out on the side probably to Derek Hagan. Andrew Walter is a great competitor and tonight he showed it, proved it. He played a great game.'

'I don't believe we were tired. I think we went out there and played with our hearts and when you do that you don't think you're tired. You give everything that you've got.'

Stanford QB T.C. Ostrander
'It took me a few drives to get into the rhythm of the game. It's unfortunate that we didn't take advantage of the things we could have taken advantage of. When I got settled down it felt really good.'

'As a unit we stay very calm. We're not all trying to do extra. We're just doing what we need to do to get the job done. If everybody does their jobs, there are not a lot of people that can stop us. If we keep the mentality of doing what you need to do and staying calm we're fine in tough situations. Alex [Smith] is the type of guy you want to go to in that situation because he wants the ball; he wants it real bad. He showed that on that play.'

'They've got a pretty potent offense. Our Defense had done a great job all night. We were pretty confident and I thought we did a great job. It seems like our defense gave us a chance to come back. At that point we were really confident that we would get the ball back with some time on the clock.'

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